Printing Process

There are two types of printing done in Bagru, the Dabu resist method of printing and the traditional Bagru print. Have a look at the below video to learn more about the process.

The dabu mud is made from locally available black clay, spoiled wheat flour, calcium and limestone. The mud is filtered by foot through a net in order to strain out rocks and minerals – leaving a thick, smooth mud paste. The process is often compared to the way grapes are crushed to make wine.

Blocks to print dabu are distinctly different, with deeper grooves for mud, and wider lines compared to blocks for the traditional Bagru print. After the mud is made, it is ready to be printed. The printer dips the block in the mud and stamps it on the fabric.

Sawdust is gently sprinkled over the mud to prevent smudging, preserving the natural beauty of the mud print.

The fabric is taken directly from the printing table to dry outside beneath the hot, rajasthani sun. The mud-printed fabric is then dyed, commonly in indigo wells, or pot-dyed in other colors like grey, yellow, pink, and more.

After dyeing, washers rinse the mud off the fabric, revealing a white color where the mud was protecting from dye. The natural cracks in the mud can be seen in the white print that is unveiled after the wash.

The fabric is left to dry again before it is quality checked, pressed, folded, packaged, and shipped.

After receiving the grey cloth, we cut the fabric to size depending on what type of product we are printing. The fabric is pre-washed and soaked for 24 hours to remove all starch, oil, dust, or any other contaminants.

The fabric is dyed in a harda solution, which allows natural dyes to adhere to the fabric and become colorfast. Harda is extracted from the myrobalan fruit, (terminlia chebula) and has traditionally been used in ayurvedic medicine for its digestive healing abilities.The yellow dyed fabric is then dried in open fields that have become a signature of Bagru’s beautiful landscape.The fabric is now a yellowish cream color (unique to the Bagru printing process) and is ready for printing.

The harda fabric is spread and smoothed on long padded printing tables. The printer gently taps the wooden block in a tray of the proper colored dye, either natural or pigment, depending on the buyer’s specifications. The printer places the block on the fabric, and gives one or two swift hits on the block to distribute the dye. This is repeated over and over again, first with the gadh block (background), and again with the rehk (fine outlines) and daata (inside filling) blocks in different colors.

After all the printing is complete, the fabric is left to dry for 2-3 days before it is washed. Once the fabric is thoroughly dried, it is boiled in a large copper pot with a mixture of natural ingredients, including alum and various flowers. The fabric is constantly stirred to avoid burning at the bottom of the pot. After boiling, the fabric is once again washed to remove any excess dyes or dirt, and again dried in the sun. The block printed fabric is finally ready to be packaged and sold.

The dabu mud is made from locally available black clay, spoiled wheat flour, calcium and limestone. The mud is filtered by foot through a net in order to strain out rocks and minerals – leaving a thick, smooth mud paste. The process is often compared to the way grapes are crushed to make wine.

Blocks to print dabu are distinctly different, with deeper grooves for mud, and wider lines compared to blocks for the traditional Bagru print. After the mud is made, it is ready to be printed. The printer dips the block in the mud and stamps it on the fabric.

Sawdust is gently sprinkled over the mud to prevent smudging, preserving the natural beauty of the mud print.

The fabric is taken directly from the printing table to dry outside beneath the hot, rajasthani sun. The mud-printed fabric is then dyed, commonly in indigo wells, or pot-dyed in other colors like grey, yellow, pink, and more.

After dyeing, washers rinse the mud off the fabric, revealing a white color where the mud was protecting from dye. The natural cracks in the mud can be seen in the white print that is unveiled after the wash.

The fabric is left to dry again before it is quality checked, pressed, folded, packaged, and shipped.

After receiving the grey cloth, we cut the fabric to size depending on what type of product we are printing. The fabric is pre-washed and soaked for 24 hours to remove all starch, oil, dust, or any other contaminants.

The fabric is dyed in a harda solution, which allows natural dyes to adhere to the fabric and become colorfast. Harda is extracted from the myrobalan fruit, (terminlia chebula) and has traditionally been used in ayurvedic medicine for its digestive healing abilities.The yellow dyed fabric is then dried in open fields that have become a signature of Bagru’s beautiful landscape.The fabric is now a yellowish cream color (unique to the Bagru printing process) and is ready for printing.

The harda fabric is spread and smoothed on long padded printing tables. The printer gently taps the wooden block in a tray of the proper colored dye, either natural or pigment, depending on the buyer’s specifications. The printer places the block on the fabric, and gives one or two swift hits on the block to distribute the dye. This is repeated over and over again, first with the gadh block (background), and again with the rehk (fine outlines) and daata (inside filling) blocks in different colors.

After all the printing is complete, the fabric is left to dry for 2-3 days before it is washed. Once the fabric is thoroughly dried, it is boiled in a large copper pot with a mixture of natural ingredients, including alum and various flowers. The fabric is constantly stirred to avoid burning at the bottom of the pot. After boiling, the fabric is once again washed to remove any excess dyes or dirt, and again dried in the sun. The block printed fabric is finally ready to be packaged and sold.

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